Zuma painting insults majority: Radebe

2012-05-21 12:35
Johannesburg - The painting of President Jacob Zuma with his genitals exposed was an insult to most South Africans, Justice Minister Jeff Radebe said on Monday.

"If that is art, I don't know what an insult is," he said in Johannesburg, at a New Age briefing on the transformation of the justice system.

Earlier in the day, the Black Management Forum described the painting as a "tasteless depiction" of Zuma and an "attack on the dignity and institutional office of the president of the Republic."

The forum said it was also an attack on the culture of the majority, the black people of South Africa, and could not go unchallenged.

The artwork did not advance South Africa's constitutional democracy or public discourse on the topic in any way, the forum said.

The SA Students' Congress said the painting was an attack on the morals of African culture.

"This arrogance is ideological and an attack to the very value and moral systems of the majority African people and many other religious persuasions," president Ngoako Selamolela said in a statement.

The 1.85m-high painting titled The Spear is part of artist Brett Murray's Hail to the Thief II exhibition at the Goodman Gallery in Johannesburg.

The portrait has sparked debate about freedom of expression and the right to dignity and privacy.

The African National Congress was set to argue in court on Tuesday that the painting should be removed because it violated Zuma's right to dignity and made a mockery of his office.
- SAPA
Read more on:    brett murray  |  jeff radebe  |  jacob zuma  |  zuma painting
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